There is a young man hopping on the bus on the corner just before Broadway who cannot be bothered to wake up, apparently, more than five minutes before the bus arrives.
The bus stop is directly in front of his house, and I watch him come flying down his front steps, a rumpled and un-made bed of a person. His droopy-drawered basketball shorts are pulled down to expose three-quarters of his faded yet inexplicably extroverted underwear, his tee-shirt fresh from a four-day stint in the bottom of a clothes dryer, his hair saluting the many directions of the wind.
Luckily he sat his scruffy self down the other day with Pre-Coffee Pearl, a person blithely on her way to work and generous of spirit. Pre-Coffee Pearl struggled to remind herself of how late she used to stay up and how cruel the mornings could be. Pre-Coffee Pearl smiles indulgently and thinks, “Some day, he’ll see this particular version of himself get on the bus and he’ll be aghast…”
Post-Coffee Pearl would have seen it differently.
Post-Coffee Pearl, however – although prone to referring to herself in the third person, as seen here – would not have an opinion for another 45 minutes.
In the meantime, Pre-Coffee Pearl fights to keep her emotions from her face, although, to the non-Midwestern eye, she’s already failed. You see that? She’s pursed her lips in disapproval. And you see that? That was the ever-so-slight shake of the head she reserves for flagrant flauntings of free-form fashion.
And funky facial fauna.
Because Pre-Coffee Pearl may not fully appreciate New Bus Guy’s clearing the sleep from his eyes and using a disposable toothbrush on the bus, but she does love her alliteration.